Your friendly, neighborhood bar is stepping out. Owner Frank Hendrix (pictured), with help from Beauty Bar captain Paul Devitt, has franchised the Emo's name, and by the end of this year, Las Vegas will be the home of a brand-new Emo's. "Paul and I had talked about it, and I told him that I want to open an Emo's down the street from every Beauty Bar in the country," Hendrix says. The old, 55,000-square-foot Sears building at 601 Freemont St. in downtown Las Vegas will house the new live-music venue, condo offices, and eventually 54-story condominiums. In addition to passing on the name and the legacy, Emo's Austin will retain creative control of the new venture, booking about 50% of the acts, and Austin's very own Guilty Dave will be production manager. "I'm not going to be an everyday, hands-on type guy," admits Hendrix. "But I think that with the people I'm sending there, we'll be able to maintain the integrity of the product. That's the key to me. I just don't want to cheese it up." In the next five years, Hendrix hopes to capitalize on his plans with Devitt, so don't be surprised if New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego soon become bathed in black and red. For now, the only all-ages venue in the fastest-growing county in the country will reside two blocks away from the Viva Vision canopy. "We're going to have to create a scene," Hendrix emphasizes. We don't anticipate any problems there.
What Happens in Vegas ...
It's hot as hell outside, and that can mean only one thing: The Austin City Limits Music Festival is right around the corner. In four weeks, Capital Sports & Entertainment along with Charles Attal Presents give the finger to Mother Nature, following a very successful Lollapalooza in Chicago's Grant Park including 166,000 happy fans. "It's hard to beat that park," says Attal. "It was like a dream to me. It went by too fast." Attal hopes to reframe that experience with ACL, Sept. 15-17 in Zilker Park. All three-day passes sold out, with only a few single-day tickets remaining (www.aclfest.com). All the main headliners remain Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Van Morrison, Willie Nelson with only a few changes trickling in. Brooklyn trendsetters TV on the Radio have been added, Montreal sonic engineers the Dears have replaced the Fields, and Kasey Chambers and Feist have dropped. This year's festival promises more shade and less dust; a parkwide irrigation system is under construction as we speak. As if that weren't enough, we reported last week that tickets for the Rolling Stones' Oct. 22 Zilker Park show go on sale this Saturday, Aug. 19 (www.ticketmaster.com). The park configuration, stage placement, and capacity for that show are still under discussion, and the opener should be announced soon.
Let Them Entertain You
Following an overwhelmingly successful first run, Houston's Infernal Bridegroom Productions announces an encore run of Daniel Johnston rock opera Speeding Motorcycle. Written and directed by IBP founding Artistic Director Jason Nodler in cahoots with Captain America himself, the opera tells the story of Joe the Boxer, who falls in love with an undertaker and decides the only way to gain her affection is to die himself. The production is staged in the Axiom, Houston's former punk rock dive. "We've gotten a tremendously great response from audiences ones who are very familiar with Daniel's stuff and ones who didn't know who he was when they walked in the door," Nodler says. "And Daniel just loves it. After he saw it the first time
one of the company members walked up to him and said, 'What did you think, Daniel?' And he said, 'That was great! I loved it! We should make a video tape of it and sell it, so we can remember it forever.'" There's hope for an Austin production of the original opera sometime next year, but for now the play shows Thursday through Saturday, 8pm, through Sept. 2. "This is a departure for me," Nodler adds. "It's the most uplifting thing that I've ever worked on. Everyone is having this reaction to the show. It's like vitamins for the soul." For tickets, call 713/522-8443.
Joe the Boxer
It's not quite show time yet, but the building at 912 Red River former home to Velvet Spade, Le Privilege, and the Caucus Club will soon get a haircut. A group of investors purchased the business next to Club de Ville and hopes to deem the club Mohawk by ACL. Remodeled with reusable and recyclable materials by Design Build Adventure, Mohawk will feature a private greenroom upstairs including a bar, stage, miniature recording studio, and private entry. "The Mohawk will operate during the day as a wireless cafe, coffee house, and lounge," explains co-owner Will Steakley. "All our shows will be digitally recorded and housed on our servers. Customers can come in, listen to last week's show, surf the Web, and take care of business from this venue." By night, a new sound system and enclosed outdoor amphitheatre will house bands. The whole concept comes from the Mohican Indians and their ability to live off the earth while still kicking ass. For now, 912 Red River is open Wednesday through Saturday with local bands and DJs, but in the future the club hopes to book reggae, ska, and metal, as well as indie rock. "It will be an ever-changing experience positioned to give back to the local musicians and music enthusiasts of Austin," says Steakley.
Last of the Mohicans
Thank goodness for electric guitars. In week six, Austin's Patrice Pike proved her own once again on CBS reality show Rock Star: Supernova with a rockin' rendition of John Lennon's "Instant Karma." Pike strummed her brand-new Gibson SG, a gift to the show's Top 10 rockers. The next night called her safe, but Josh and Jill weren't so lucky in a double elimination. It's down to eight, and they all seem to be crazy. Rock Star airs 8pm Tuesday and 7pm Wednesday on CBS.
Felicidades, Billy! It's time for Billy Beerland's weeklong birthday Beerfest, so bust out the PBRs! Tuesday through Saturday, Beerland hosts everything from the trombone metal of locals Gorch Fock (Wednesday) to San Marcos instrumentalists Til We're Blue or Destroy (Thursday) and the rootsy beard pop of Brothers and Sisters (Saturday). On the seventh day, he rested. Can I get more guitar in my monitor?
Whether the change was due to promotion for new documentary Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing or problematic ticket sales, the Dixie Chicks' Frank Erwin Center date has moved from Oct. 1 to Dec. 4. Count yourself lucky that Austin wasn't one of the dates axed. We're talking to you, Houston. Tickets are still on sale at www.texasboxoffice.com, and those already bought will be honored for the later date or refunded at point of purchase.
Saturday at Woody's South, the first Biscuit Fest takes the cake with all proceeds going to the Randy "Biscuit" Turner Fund, a community arts foundation to help artists financially. Participating are Zookeeper, the Jimmy Deveney All Stars, a Big Boys tribute, Biscuit poetry read by Ken Jones, and more. Plus a raffle and bazaar. More info at www.biscuitfest.org/woodys.htm.
"TCB" returns next week after two weeks on the road with Moonlight Towers. Be patient. He might need some recovery time.